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Keeping the FaithA History of Northern Soul$
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Stephen Catterall and Keith Gildart

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780719097102

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.7765/9781526150974

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PRINTED FROM MANCHESTER SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.manchester.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Manchester University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in MSO for personal use.date: 27 September 2021

In the days before Wigan

In the days before Wigan

(p.51) 2 In the days before Wigan
Keeping the Faith

Stephen Catterall

Keith Gildart

Manchester University Press

This chapter examines the locales and clubs that formed the foundation of the northern soul scene, including the Catacombs in Wolverhampton, the Torch in Stoke-on-Trent, and Blackpool Mecca. There is a detailed analysis of the social context of the emergence and success of such clubs and the authors locate them within the framework of strong local political and cultural identities. The ‘rare soul’ scene of the late 1960s formed part of a midlands and northern soundscape that was still predominantly industrial and thrived in localities in which particular class and gendered identities were relatively fixed. The chapter also situates the rare soul scene as part of tradition of dancing that had deep roots in the working-class cultures of the midlands and the industrial north-west. The transition from rare soul to northern soul is mapped through a critical reading of specialist music magazines, diaries and oral testimony.

Keywords:   northern soul, Wolverhampton, Blackpool, Stoke-on-Trent, North Wales

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